PLAY REVIEW: ONEymoon (Hamilton Fringe)

What do you do when you’re left at the alter? More importantly what do you do when you’re left the day before you’re supposed to get married? The venue is booked, your family has arrived, and the reception is set. Plus it’s all paid for, as is the honeymoon. So what do you do? Why not marry yourself? If there’s anyone you can love unconditionally, and who will truly love you, it’s yourself, right?

That’s the premise behind ONEymoon, a one woman show currently playing at The Staircase theatre as part of the 2015 Hamilton Fringe Festival.

Caroline Bierman does just that. She doesn’t let the ceremony and honeymoon go to waste when her fiance, who she never really wanted to marry anyway, stands her up. Caroline marries herself, flys away to a tropical destination for her honeymoon (ahem, I mean ONEymoon). She then arrives back home somewhat of a YouTube sensation after her uncle uploaded the ceremony to the internet.

But even after having doubts about the whole ordeal, Caroline decides to throw herself into the marriage. For better or worse. ‘Til death do her part.

Starring in the show, Christel Bartelse is filled with pure energy and has no trouble engaging the audience throughout the sixty minute show.

Playing almost like a retrospective, Bartelse plays both Caroline’s present self as the runs through the trials and tribulations of married life, while also occasionally flashing back to the failed relationships in the character’s youth. Bartelse also shows her range, jumping between Caroline and other characters in a scene.

The show is filled with humour, but also has the brush strokes of broader underlying themes. You can really feel the underlying insecurity in the character as she struggles with her doubts. Your heart breaks with her a little bit and it makes you just want to run up, give her a hug and tell her it’s going to be okay. Don’t do that, though. Just stay in your seat, even if Caroline flirts and talks to you.

Like she did to me. A little bit.

One thing that I wasn’t fully expecting from the show was a touch of audience participation. With the show taking place at the intimate Staircase Cafe Theatre (Elaine Mae Theatre) we were very close to the stage, with a lucky few briefly joining the show.

I fully enjoyed ONEymoon and I think you will too. It was funny and both heartwarming and heartbreaking. You’ll love and feel for Caroline, and that’s really what anyone really wants, isn’t it? To be loved?

Show the talented Christel Bartelse some love and check out her show.

  • Playwright: Christel Bartelse
  • Director: Paul Hutcheson
  • Cast: Christel Bartelse
  • Show Type: Comedy
  • Audience: General, Mature
  • Running Time: 60 Minutes


About Jason Nason
I'm the editor of Hamilton-Today.com and I love the city of Hamilton. From sports to entertainment, local events and the politics of the city, I will try to bring it here to you!

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